Title: The Disappointing Pancake
Compatibility: iPad // iOS 5.1
Size: 91.7 MB
Description: Another month, another stand-alone Mibblio app. This one features "The Disappointing Pancake " from occasional kids' musician and author Loeb. The song, like the titular pancake, has bounced around for awhile -- it originally appeared on Loeb's first solo kids album, 2008's Camp Lisa (with Steve Martin on banjo!). As with other Mibblio apps, the song plays while the user can add or remove different tracks (e.g., guitar, percussion, keyboards) from the recorded song while simultaneously being able to play melody and stringed/guitar instruments in harmonically compatible keys, not to mention percussion. It basically lets kids (and adults) play along in ways that allow some creativity but also help make whatever comes out sonically sound decently. (You can also pinch out to expand it to full screen if you just want to read and sing along.)
In addition, the songs are accompanied by illustrations that feature lyrics to those songs. The result is a musical picture book over which the user has some small control. Along with the song, which is one my favorites of Loeb's, I also enjoyed the retro illustrations of Brad Renner; his pancake looks very happy as he goes on his adventures in Loeb's story song, which is kind of the point, isn't it?
The price for the app, $0.99, is pretty cheap, the same price as if you'd buy it through the main Mibblio app if in fact you could do so -- which you can't at the moment (or at least I couldn't find it in my app). [Ed.: The folks at Mibblio say it's now available in the main app, too.] As with the rest of the Mibblio apps, it's well-done, and this is definitely one of the more appealing songs in the Mibblio library. Fans of Loeb or the song will enjoy it, and it would make a fine selection if you want to explore the concept for the first time.
Age Range: 3 through 7
Note: I was provided a copy of this app for possible review.